South San Francisco, CA October 12, 2021 Submitted by Peter Feng, SSFUSD PIO
A shortage of substitute teachers has prompted South San Francisco Unified School District (SSFUSD) Superintendent Dr. Shawnterra Moore, district office staff, and the district’s assistant superintendents to pitch in as substitute teachers as a way to overcome staffing shortages caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It’s not ideal,” said Dr. Moore of the staffing shortage. “but it’s a great way to reconnect with our roots as classroom teachers. Having the opportunity to see our students in class again is also very exciting.”
To help curb the spread of the coronavirus, SSFUSD transitioned to virtual classes on March 16, 2020.
The district subsequently presided over the departure of the class of 2020 and the class of 2021, as students in those years graduated in the midst of the global pandemic.
Crucially, middle school students and high school students only returned to campus at the start of the 2021-22 school year, almost 18 months later.
While the district’s schools have all reopened, staffing levels
“Like everything, the pandemic has caused many to reevaluate their priorities,” said Jay Spaulding, assistant superintendent of human resources. “Our substitute teaching positions are all part-time, and people may be looking for more full-time work at this time.”
According to Spaulding, the district has been advertising on edjoin.org and social media, but applicants have been hard to find.
In the meantime, the district will continue to pull together.
“In uncertain times, communities come together to look out for one another,” said Dr. Moore.“At SSFUSD, we are a family, and we are all in this together.”
SSFUSD serves the communities of Daly City, South San Francisco, and San Bruno.
The district is home to a highly regarded science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) program and more than 8,000 students at the elementary, middle, and high school levels.